The family members of three people killed in June’s Orlando nightclub shooting are suing Facebook, Twitter and Google for not doing enough to curb terrorist content.
The attorney representing the families, Keith Altman, is taking a creative approach to the case, arguing that the websites should be held liable for what users post because the platforms pair content with advertising. He even went so far as to say that Facebook and the other sites “profit from ISIS postings” through advertising revenue. The suit claims that these three major tech companies have provided accounts to the terrorist group to recruit, raise money and spread propaganda.
Attorney Keith Altman also claimed that the public would turn against the sites, and he may be right — this isn’t the first lawsuit of its kind. Last year, the father of a woman killed in the Paris attacks filed a very similar suit against Facebook.
“I think public opinion will simply not tolerate these companies taking this laissez-faire attitude anymore,” Altman said. “The money is a secondary issue… This is about other families not having to bury their loved ones.”
Facebook responded quickly with a statement of its own, saying “we are committed to providing a service where people feel safe when using Facebook,” and “we sympathize with the victims and their families.”
These lawsuits are definitely difficult to win in court, but the people filing them should be commended for trying to hold Facebook accountable.